Is Your Business “Personality Challenged”?

People enjoy doing business with people, especially people they like.

If you could walk around all day just meeting people, telling them all about you and your wonderful business, you might pick up some customers.

Unless you’re an obnoxious pain in the backside!

Of course, this approach is not very practical. While you’re out gallivanting around town shaking hands, telling stories and whatnot, who’s minding the store?

Back in the day, marketing was more plainly about selling products and services. It wasn’t too hard to get noticed either. One or two newspapers, thirteen channels on the TV and no internet. (darn I’m old!)

Drop a full page ad in the local fish wrapper with a screaming headline like


In flocked the masses! People with money to burn, rushing through your door.

Ahhh, the good old days!

Today, customers are bombarded with marketing on TV, Radio, Social Media, Email, Direct Mail, Bus Wrappers, on their Smart Phones – the list goes on and on.

In order to stand out in the crowd, your business needs a personality.

One that will make a positive, lasting impression and make your business seem more like a person that customers will like.

I’m not talking about a personality like Lady Gaga or Justin Beiber wearing a sandwich board in front of your business (though who wouldn’t pay to see that!) – I mean a business personality.

Think of it like this, if your business was a person interested in dating your daughter (or son!) what sort of traits should they possess?

You’re Business as a prospective suitor.

Is your business?

SMART – You’re up on new products and services that benefit customers. You offer practical solutions to customer problems. You are knowledgeable about your industry.

SINCERE – You’re so honest, you’re willing to miss out on sale by telling a customer “I don’t think this widget isn’t for you” or “that outfit does not work for you” or “I think you should wait until the new version arrives in a few weeks” – You honestly believe in the quality of goods and services your business provides.

FUNNY – Have you ever rewound an E-Trade baby commercial? Under the right circumstances, you employ a charming sense of humor to customers – even at your own expense.

ATTRACTIVE – You’re easy on the eyes because you keep your business well maintained and you’re concerned with physical appearance. Aside from venturing into some backwoods roadhouse to enjoy a little rough & tumble on a Friday night, most people prefer dealing with a business that is clean & neat-appearing.

STABLE – Are you intending to stay around awhile, in for the long haul? Long term relationships are important to customers. They want to know you’ll be around through good times and bad.

Enough of the Dating Game, I think you get the point!

Now What?

Build your business personality into all your marketing strategies and communications.

Rather than telling customers what you want to sell them, show them how well you listen and respond to their needs. (Yes dear, I’ll take my own advice!)

Identify problems, offer solutions. Try delivering your marketing message as helpful, educational content. Show genuine enthusiasm and personality.

This approach is more subtle than outright selling and will lead customers to their own conclusion to buy something from you.

I say, add more of a personality to your business that customers respond to, remember and will happily tell their friends, family and business associates all about!

Check out to see how we can help you build business.

Find CUSTOMERS with Good Old Direct Mail

So you’re working on a marketing plan bring in more customers and increase sales for your small business. GREAT!

No doubt your marketing plan includes:

Website & SEO – Right On, Check!

Social Media – Absolutely, Check!

Email Marketing – Hit Send, Check!

Direct Mail? – Little “Old-Fashioned” for me, thanks anyway.

You should consider direct mail. In fact, direct mail is a very solid base on which to build your marketing plan.

Direct Mail is a Proven Winner for finding customers. While the overall volume of mail handled by the Post Office has declined over the years, volume of marketing mail has remained steady and effective.

With less clutter in a customer’s mailbox, your direct mail marketing will stand out. But how does direct mail stack up against the internet, search engine optimization, social media, email marketing?

Read on.

Website & Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

Most businesses these days have a website. Some of these websites are good, some great, some downright horrible!

Many never get found or seen by customers due to a nonexistent or ineffective SEO strategy. There are many factors that go into being found on sites like Google, Yahoo!, Bing, etc., including blogging, back linking and pay-per-click advertising. If you are not prepared to make a commitment of both time and money for a strong SEO strategy, it is unlikely your website will generate sales.

A well-targeted direct mail piece will absolutely be seen by the customer who receives it, guaranteed! Resulting sales generated by an effective direct mail advertising campaign are immediate.

Social Media

Social Media marketing through Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Linked In and the next, NEXT BIG THING are always hot topics around the marketing water cooler, and for good reason.  Millions of people are visiting social media websites every day. They’re “liking”‘, “pinning”, “linking in”, watching videos, searching for long-lost old flames, etc. But are they buying? Maybe.

Social Media is a great way to spread the word about someone or something. Getting people talking, creating a BUZZ. However, when given the choice between BUZZ & BUCKS most business owners choose the latter!

As with SEO, there are strategies – both free and paid – that will affect the impact of your social media marketing efforts. And of course there is the investment of your time.

No doubt as a small business owner, time is the one thing you do NOT have enough of!

The creation and implementation of a direct mail campaign is pretty straightforward. A targeted audience of potential customers, a compelling, irresistible offer and a little help from a direct mail marketing professional , you do not need to spend very much of your own precious time.

What about Email Marketing?

Sure, you can (and should) use email marketing. It is a great way to communicate offer and events to people you already do business with. But keep in mind, customers who do not know you react very differently to an email message than they do a piece of direct mail. Unlike an image flickering on a computer screen, a direct mail piece is engaging and memorable. An envelope or self-mailer brochure needs to be opened, a catalog flipped through and a postcard flipped over. The customer is in direct, actual physical contact with your advertising campaign.

Another big factor to consider – email marketing is relatively inexpensive so everybody and their brother is filling Inboxes with of all types of offers – some relevant, some not-so-relevant and some unfit to view in mixed company! Legitimate, Opt-in email lists are hard to come by and not inexpensive. However illegitimate, spam lists are cheap and plentiful, so buyers beware!

Do You Still Think Direct Mail Marketing is Old-Fashioned? It is! (But in a good way!)

Customer LIKE receiving relevant mail in their mailbox. Even some younger customers you’d assume might not!  According to a recent study conducted by InnoMedia, NuStats, and Vertis, 87% of Gen Y and 86% of Gen X bring in the mail the day it’s delivered.  73% of Gen Y and 68% of Gen X retail direct mail readers have used coupons received in the mail. Gen X and Y consumers rate 75% of the mail they receive as valuable.

The act of reaching customers directly at their mailbox allows for a more thoughtful, memorable introduction to your business. Once they start to read through your mailer they begin the knowing, liking and trusting you and your business.

This inevitably leads prospective customers to become paying customers. So if Old-Fashioned marketing means marketing that leads to finding new customers and increased sales – call me old-fashioned!

To be clear, I am a big fan of digital marketing channels. Heck, the tag line of my company is Blended Marketing Solutions – my term for integrated marketing .

Due to the relative ease of implementation, the target-ability and effectiveness of direct mail, business owners should put direct mail marketing at the top of their marketing TO-DO List.